Games Maker – [Laughs] Timbucktoo – no, no, I am joking being serious, what can I do?
On July 27th 2012 Neville Gabie proposed being the greatest possible distance away from the Opening Ceremony for the London 2012 Olympic games. But why exactly would he wish to distance himself so specifically from the Olympic Opening Ceremony having previously spent sixteen months working as Artist in Residence on the Olympic Park during construction?
In order to ascertain where that place might be, he invited anyone to submit a proposal with suggestions, reasons and a means of travel within a limited budget. This might be as much a metaphysical space as an actual destination. Ninety-nine viable ideas were submitted and a selection panel of six people, Danielle Arnaud, Sam Wilkinson, Sarah Butler, David Lillington, Bill Drummond, Jason Wood, selected a final destination for Neville at The Martin Luther King Park, Paris.
The role of an artist in residence, if it has any value at all, is to explore and engage, inevitably creating debate. It affords that unique position: objectivity. He became increasingly aware that a significant number of people were uneasy about what the brand of the Olympics represents and the notion of using the Olympics as a means of regeneration. This project is about asking those questions and considering the wider aspect.
Neville Gabie has developed a wide practice making work in direct response to specific locations. Invariably, places in a state of social or physical change, the work manifests itself as temporary interventions, photographs, books and films. Projects develop over a sustained period of time, working collaboratively within communities and often involving other artists, writers and musicians.
Previous projects include POSTS published by Penguin Books. Photographs of temporary goals from this publication have been exhibited in Japan, Korea, Germany, Portugal, South Africa and the UK. Artists and writers Residency: MOMA Artist in Residence at Tate Liverpool, a summer residency at Halley Research Station, Brunt Ice shelf, Antarctica with the British Antarctic Survey. Artist in residence for three years on a building site in Bristol – Cabot Circus bs1. Five year project in a North Liverpool Tower block, Up in the Air. He has worked on diverse residencies in Guangzhou, China, a remote town in Western Australia, International Art Space, Kellerberrin, Australia, as well as working on a photographic project with the NGO Right to Play in Afghan Refugee camps located in Pakistan. His work is included in the Tate Gallery and Arts Council collections.
This exhibition includes a screening of a short film made at The Martin Luther King Park in Paris. This will be accompanied by an audio installation of the selection panel discussions. A limited edition publication includes every proposal submitted for The Greatest Distance.
Exhibition: Danielle Arnaud, 123 Kennington Road, London SE11 6SF UK
t/f +44(0) 207 735 8292
11 January – 10 February 2013. Fri, Sat & Sun 2-6pm (or by appointment)
Image: Neville Gabie. The Greatest Distance, 2012